Asperger’s summer tour: Summer 2018 Highlights – Beyond Akeela’s Travel
Beyond Akeela teens across the board loved traveling together for their last week of camp. Asperger’s summer travel tours have the opportunity to be transformative experience for teens that have challenges making social connections with peers. What makes Beyond Akeela’s travel opportunities different from other Asperger’s summer travel tours is the community we build BEFORE we travel. Two weeks are spent facilitating social connection through a variety of structured camp activities and some of what teens love: unstructured free time to just hang out with each other! Through these two weeks, which also include some travel like an overnight camping trip and day trips to Green Bay and Sheboygan, Beyond Akeela teens form friendships that last a lifetime and find their tribe. Having a group of friends that feels like a family makes traveling a much more fruitful experience. Here are some of the highlights from this summer’s travel:
Need we say more? The Waterpark Capital of the World never disappoints! An afternoon at Noah’s Ark waterpark followed by an evening exploring downtown Wisconsin Dells made for some happy teens this summer. It gave them a chance simply to be teens and hang out independently with their best camp friends.
A night under the stars, surrounded by the smell of campfire, campers singing their favorite camp songs, and of course, s’mores! That’s what camp and travel is all about. New friendships formed and old bonds continued to strengthen right in front of our eyes. A nice cherry on top was an awesome white water rafting trip!
The Beyond Akeela trip ends in Chicago with a three night stay right in the downtown loop. Within walking distance to hot spots like the Chicago Cultural Center and Millennium Park, we had a chance to see the best of what Chicago has to offer. The favorites this summer were the Lincoln Park Zoo, Shedd Aquarium, Field Museum, and going sky-high at the SkyDeck for a 360 view overlooking the city we just explored together.
So why travel? Traveling gets you out of your comfort zone. It forces you to adapt to new settings, and quickly. Traveling challenges you to think on your feet, and think independently. When you travel with your best camp friends, this skill growth is magnified, and the bonds with your friends are strengthened more than you imagined possible. These are all valuable skills that teens with Asperger’s syndrome are working on, and we love seeing the development of them right before our eyes every summer.